Near-Earth Objects and the Faulkes Telescopes

Some FT NEO links:
Rapid rotator
Slow rotator
Close approach (1/3 lunar distance)
Some other FT projects at Armagh

2009 QC animation
The near-Earth asteroid 2009 QC on 2009 August 24th around 11:15 UT. The two frames are separated by 100 seconds. The field of view shown is 100 arcsec wide; click on image to get larger field (file is over 1 Megabyte).

The Faulkes Telescopes have been successfully used for NEO (Near-Earth Object) work by various astronomers (e.g. UKAPP). In 2009 July-August the Faulkes Telescope Project and Las Cumbres Observatory Global Telescope Network gave us the opportunity to control FT North from Armagh, obtain astrometric measurements and send the results to the Minor Planet Center (MPC). We imaged 9 near-Earth asteroids, 2 comets and 2 main belt asteroids (including an asteroid from the NEO Confirmation Page of objects discovered so recently that their nature is unknown but which may well be NEOs; our measurements allowed the MPC to identify that particular asteroid as from the main belt). The observations were planned, undertaken and measured by Juliet Griffin and Andrew Magowan, as a Nuffield Science summer project. The project supervisor was David Asher.

2002 NP1 Near-Earth asteroid 2002 NP1 on 2009 July 29th around 11:45 UT through B, V and R filters. If we give these frames blue, green and red colours and superimpose them, the asteroid's motion against the stars is apparent (a few minutes between B and V, and R soon after V). Click on image to enlarge (0.75 MB file).
Comet 22P/Kopff on 2009 July 28th, showing the coma and tail Kopff

Images obtained using the Faulkes Telescope North, operated by Las Cumbres Observatory.

Last Revised: 2010 February 2nd